Recently, Harrison Wicker, a Cars and Coffee Morrisville partner, and I met with the dynamic force driving Vietnam into the automotive spotlight - VinFast. Harrison, wearing his car-loving Raleigh attorney hat, was just as intrigued as I was after we met with Sean Ackley, Head of Charging & Energy, Americas, and Van Anh Nguyen, CEO at VinFast USA.
A subsidiary of Vingroup, one of Asia's private sector giants, VinFast represents more than just a brand; it's a statement. VinFast isn't just about Pham Nhat Vuong, the notable first billionaire from Vietnam, and his extensive business empire spanning from real estate to hospitality. It's about change and courage.
Let's pause and consider the audacity: VinFast didn't exist before 2017. And now? They're producing everything from high-end electric sedans to scooters, hailing from their mammoth manufacturing hub in Hai Phong, Vietnam.
VinFast isn't just looking at the domestic scene. No, they're aiming higher. Their vision of a greener, electric future is taking shape right here, in WTE's backyard in Chatham County.
And talk about making an entrance. The VF8, their flagship for the US market, recently debuted at the Cars & Coffee Event in Morrisville, North Carolina. We didn't just gawk from a distance. We got hands-on, played with their futuristic 15" infotainment systems, and metaphorically kicked the tires.
Curious? Dive deeper into the VinFast story through the links below. VinFast isn't just another car tale; it's a narrative about challenging the status quo. And I'm here for it.
In the heart of Vietnam lies Hai Phong, the City of Red Flamboyant Trees, bustling with life, stories, and the headquarters of the renowned Vingroup. As this dynamic entity charts its course toward making electric cars in Chatham, North Carolina, let's pause and marvel at the tapestry that is Hai Phong.
Gateway of Possibilities Hai Phong isn't just a city; it's a nexus. Its bustling port represents the dream of a connected world, a testament to the idea that ships coming into the harbor bring more than goods—they bring opportunities and dreams, much like the team working at the Vingroup.
A Canvas of History Navigate Hai Phong's streets, and you' walk through time. From the echoes of operas past to the whispers in ancient pagodas, every brick and boulevard tells a story. It's not just history; it's a lesson in resilience, art, and community.
Nature's Masterpiece Just a stone's throw away, Halong Bay stands as nature's gallery, reminding us that some of the most beautiful designs come from mother nature. The bay is a nudge to innovators and dreamers. "Can you match this?" The bay whispers.
The Urban Beat In the rhythm of its markets, the melodies from its eateries, and the buzz of its streets, there's an energy that's unmistakably Hai Phong—an urban symphony of progress, challenges, and the everyday hustle.
Taste of Tradition Each bite in Hai Phong tells a story—of traditions passed down, of families gathering, of a city proud of its flavors, dishes, restaurants, and tradition. The "banh da cua" isn't just a meal; it's a narrative.
And as we gear up to welcome a slice of Vietnam to Chatham, it's more than an exchange of business; it's a mingling of cultures, ideas, and dreams. It makes one ponder: Aren't we all a bit Vietnamese at heart in our ever-evolving world?
I love WUNC's slightly snarky opening in their North Carolina is getting its first car manufacturing plant. Here's what you need to know post:
Nothing bridges a political divide like a jobs announcement. That held true on Tuesday in Raleigh, where state officials often pitted against one another in partisan squabbles, joined to hail the arrival of North Carolina's first car manufacturer.
The post goes on to discuss the $4B investment to make cars on a 1,900 acres in the Triangle's Innovation Point mega-site in Moncure in Chatham County near where WTE Solutions offices are located.
Tech Crunch shared more details about VinFast, but nothing about the Vingroup's planned North Carolina factory.
VinFast’s plans for the United States extend well beyond selling some electric crossovers. The company announced ambitious plans to invest more than $200 million to open a U.S. headquarters based in Los Angeles. The company also plans to open more than 60 sales locations, multiple service centers and some mobile service sites by 2022. A factory is also on the list, although that is not slated to open until the second half of 2024.
Henry Payne's Good morning, USA: How Vietnamese startup automaker VinFast came to America is my favorite article about VinFast's journey to bring Vietnam to America.
“Since Day One, we had a global strategy,” said VinFast CEO of North America Van Anh Nguyen in an interview at the VF 8’s media launch in California. “We want to become a global, fully-electric company and here we are. We’ve delivered vehicles to Vietnamese customers and now we are delivering the VF 8 to American customers.”
Van Anh Nguyen, CEO VinFast USA speaking in Detroit © Henry Payne, The Detroit News